Archive for 'Climate change'
First published in Red Flag, this feature looks at the links between capitalism and environmental destruction, the Australian media’s woeful record in failing to explain the science of climate change, and offers practical suggestions for a zero-emissions economy.
Capitalism is destroying the planet. Now we suffer, says the Labor Party-Philippines.
The horror of devastations unleashed by monster-typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) upon eastern and central Philippine regions is unspeakable. As of writing, estimates on number of casualties and actual damages stay tentative since many areas remain isolated and communications, power, road and port systems are down.
It looks to me as if profit and competition are the barriers to addressing climate change. If that is the case then only a democratic revolution of workers to run society to satisfy human need can address climate change. As the banners at some environmental demonstrations and eco-socialist conferences say ‘System Change, not Climate Change.’
We need to recognize the need to replace capitalism with a more rational, cooperative, democratic and humanistic system in sync with our “species being” and nature. If we don’t, we will lose our only home, writes Chris Williams, the author of Ecology and Socialism: Solutions to Capitalist Ecological Crisis and a participant in the ecosocialist coalition System Change Not Climate Change, in Socialist Worker US.
The invisibility of labour as the key in the production and exchange processes is an important part of the ideology of capitalism. Tony Abbott’s rants about invisible gases are just a small part of that cloak of invisibility around our labour that is one structure of capitalism that he seeks to defend and protect.
Let’s move to a totally renewable energy Australia by 2025. In my opinion that won’t happen without a social revolution, a mass upsurge of working people to move away from concepts of profitability to satisfying human need democratically. As a slogan of the left says ‘System change, not climate change.’
We need a democratic revolution and workers’ state based on production to satisfy human need, not to make a profit, to move as soon as possible to a renewable energy economy.
Clearly that is not on the agenda in Australia at the moment. But with the failure of the Greens’ nicely nicely let’s not upset the parliamentary applecart, maybe the time has come for the Greens to abandon respectability and lead a campaign of demonstrations and civil disobedience to force governments to address climate change.
Rather than celebrating Obama’s renewed “commitment” to environmental action, we should recognize it for what it is: After five years of doing all he can to promote fossil fuel production, it’s the first, timid, grudging response of the U.S. state to the growing environmental movement against Obama and all that he represents: the economic, political and military priorities of U.S. imperial power.
These two actions – appointing former mining maggot and climate change denier Gary Gray to the resources portfolio and merging Climate Change with the Environment – are good examples of Labor’s bankruptcy; of its complete capitulation to neoliberalism and the idea that the market is the best way to organise society and profit the only god to be worshipped.
Of course, whether we leave behind a world to our descendants as beautiful as the one we were born into, will depend on our own independent, organized self-activity to wrench control away from a ruling elite that is quite happy to continue making money from a system that must be overturned.